Nevada jobless rate improves slightly to 14% as slow recovery continues |

Nevada jobless rate improves slightly to 14% as slow recovery continues

Geoff Dornan

Nevada's July jobless rate of 14 percent is well below the U.S. rate, which stood at 10.2 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.
Courtesy Graphs: DETR

CARSON CITY, Nev. — Nevada’s unemployment rate fell 1.2 percent in July as the state’s slow recovery continues.

The state finished the month with an unemployment rate of 14 percent after adding 14,800 jobs during the month. Total employment in the state is now at 1.28 million, according to statistics released Aug. 19 by the state.

Nevada Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation Director Elisa Cafferata last week said she is encouraged that more people are going back to work but, “we still have a long way to go.”

Before the coronavirus pandemic hit in March and led to Gov. Steve Sisolak ordering the shutdown of much of the Silver State’s economy, Nevada’s jobless rate was below 4 percent.

“Nevada has added jobs for the third straight month in July, though at a slower pace than in previous months,” DETR economist Dave Schmidt said last week. “… The challenges posed by the pandemic continue to weigh on the labor market, and the response to COVID-19 by businesses and the public continues to evolve. As the public health situation continues to develop, we will see corresponding impacts in employment and unemployment in the months ahead.”

The state saw thousands return to work in May and June after casinos and other hospitality businesses reopened. In July, professional and business services add the most jobs at 3,900.

Leisure and hospitality industry jobs remain the most damaged compared to July 2019, down just shy of 16 percent.

There were 66,698 initial claims for unemployment benefits filed during the month. That is an increase of 18,839 over June, the main reason caused by the second round of mandated business closures on July 10 — including bars. taverns and breweries/wineries.

DETR was able to release just the statewide numbers as of Aug. 19.

It takes about a week for the department to produce numbers for individual metropolitan and county level reporting areas.